Archive for the ‘congregational singing’ Category

Church Pianist Update

Tuesday, June 30th, 2015

small manuscript thumbnail pic

Holy Holy Holy (real advanced piano solo) is almost complete!  I hope to publish it very soon.

I’m REALLY enjoying the creation of the second collection of Congregational Piano Hymn Arrangements. What’s neat about these collections is they could be used for unison choir arrangements or accompaniment for flute or violin special.  See Congregational Piano Hymn Arrangements Collection One by clicking HERE.

The words of the hymns mean even more to me… in the light of what’s going on around our nation.  My heart is truly being poured out on the pages of this collection. I try to convey the text in the piano accompaniment. What a  comfort the words of these hymns have been to me!

Here’s the list for the ten hymns in this collection:

1. And Can it Be

2. At the Cross

3. Come Thou Fount

4. Heaven Came Down

5. Higher Ground

6. I Shall Know Him

7. It’s Just Like His Great Love

8. My Faith Has Found a Resting Place

9. Near the Cross

10. What a Friend We Have in Jesus

 

Church Pianist: Current Music Projects

Friday, June 5th, 2015

pen laying on staff paper

 

Working on several music projects right now:

1. “Holy Holy Holy” very advanced piano solo * Almost finished with handwritten version.

2.  Beginning to compile songs for Piano Hymns Congregational Booklet Two

3. Preparing several book reviews for Lorenz Publishing Corporation.

VERY excited about the arrangements I found in these books!  Most of them are advanced.

Church Pianist Current Activities

Wednesday, June 3rd, 2015

All-Hail-the-Power-wmAre-You-Washed-wmBlessed-Assurance-wm

Just letting my readers know I’m in the process of posting the individual hymns from the Congregational Booklet One for sale on the Congregational Piano Hymn page of our online music store. (navigation buttons at top of this page)  So far I’ve posted: All Hail the Power, Are You Washed and Blessed Assurance.

Several have requested the Blessed Assurance congregational arrangement after seeing the first sample page of it in an older article.  It’s now sold separately or in the Congregational Booklet One.

Special note: Multiple uses for the church pianist!  The piano accompaniment arrangements from the Congregational Booklet One can also be used to accompany the following:  vocal soloist, flute or violin.

MusiCarolina Event for Church Pianists!

Wednesday, May 27th, 2015

art-MusiCarolina

I just looked at the latest information on MusiCarolina and the workshops are definitely worth the church pianist’s time!

I’m having a hard time deciding which workshops I want to attend.  I think I’ve narrowed it down to:

On the Spot Arranging by Mac & Beth Lynch

Congregational Leading & Accompanying by Ron & Shelly Hamilton

Accompanying Made Simple by Shelly Hamilton

There are plenty of workshops to choose from for the song leader, church pianist or singer!

Click here to see the rest of the workshops

Early registration (adult/teen)  $59 by June 30th (Register three by June 30th and get one FREE!)

Registration $69  July 1st through July 24th

Registration at the door $79

 

 

Free Piano Excerpt of Isn’t the Love of Jesus Something Wonderful

Monday, January 26th, 2015

Isnt-the-love-CROPPED

Sorry for the delay in posting…our household has been down with the stomach bug.

Here is the excerpt of Isn’t the Love of Jesus Something Wonderful which I shared with my hymn playing student last week.  The left hand ideas resemble the improvisation I shared in the free piano prelude arrangement of “I Am Resolved”.

It’s always helpful to see the same ideas in several different keys and songs of like nature for ample reinforcement.

(Due to the copyright still active on this hymn…I could only share a portion as stated in the “fair use” copyright law.)

Having said that…if I could have shared more…I would have branched out the right hand an octave higher during the chorus to stretch my student’s playing ground.

Special note: When trying to apply the above left hand ideas… choose hymns of like nature (same time signature; similar rhythmic structure; peppy mood).

I Am Resolved: Free Piano Arrangement

Thursday, January 15th, 2015

I-Am-Resolved

I lied!  😉  I said I would publish at least the verse of I Am Resolved tonight…wound up finishing the chorus too…but don’t think you’ll mind 😉

I’ve been working on fill-ins with my most advanced hymn playing student. She plays for chapel at school and has also begun to play for church when the main pianist (her mom) is out of town or sick.  She’s doing a great job but has such a zeal to advance her hymn playing.  Well….LOVE helping her with that!

Below is a result of her lesson this week 🙂

Click here for free piano arrangement of I Am Resolved

 

 

Free Piano Prelude Arrangement Coming Soon!

Thursday, January 15th, 2015

writing_pen

Working on “I Am Resolved” prelude arrangement for one of my hymnprovising students.  She was asking about different left hand fill-ins because of all the repeated bass notes so…I was just going to jot down a few ideas for her and wound up writing the whole verse!  Guess that means I need to write out the chorus too.

I’ll share the verse hopefully by this evening (once I enter it into Finale).

This particular student is needing to expand her right hand playground area. She has always played right hand in the middle area of the keyboard.  I’m gradually conditioning her to broaden the right hand playing area… as you’ll notice towards the end of the verse.

My student and I laughed as I observed her trying to improvise on her own…playing the right hand an octave higher.  The funny part was she had no idea what to do with her left hand at that point since she had all that extra space!  😉

She WILL improve as she broadens her horizon!  I look forward to working with her at this stage of her hymn playing and plan to share with you all… what we do each week.

Look forward to sharing the first part of a  free piano prelude arrangement soon!

 

Just Published! Congregational Piano Hymn Arrangements…

Saturday, January 10th, 2015

Done! Finally!  I was extra picky with this collection and hope it’s useful to many church pianists.

I tried to create exciting accompaniments to enhance the congregational singing. Each arrangement contains an introduction as well as a couple verses/choruses worth of accompaniment.  Three of the arrangements even have key changes!

But relax 🙂  The arrangements are written in a lower key than the hymnal (at least two to three half steps lower). We have discovered that the congregation sings out even more when they can  sing in a reasonable key 😉

Congregational Piano Hymn Arrangements (Booklet One)
Congregational Piano Hymn Arrangements (Booklet One)
AUDIO SAMPLER: (product description below)

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*Downloadable product only
Price: 14.00

 

10 Late intermediate to early advanced piano congregational arrangements. (All Hail the Power, Are you Washed, Blessed Assurance, Does Jesus Care, Dwelling in Beulah Land, I Love to Tell the Story, Praise Him! Praise Him!, Rock of Ages, Sweet By and By, Sweet Hour of Prayer) 34 pages

The arrangements in this booklet are in lower keys; making it easier for the average congregation to sing. *Three of the arrangements have key changes!

Each arrangement contains an introduction and at least two verses & choruses…several of the hymns contain three verses worth of accompaniment.

*Special note: The arrangements in this booklet do not support the four-part singing found in most hymnals. *Other suggested uses: vocal solos, violin specials, unison choir specials. **Another special note: These arrangements can not stand alone as piano solos since some of the melody is absent during the piano accompaniment. *Complete audios not included with collections.

Congregational Booklet One Complete!

Saturday, January 10th, 2015

Piano-2-with-viginette

Just to let my readers know…

I just finished the first congregational pdf booklet this morning!  The collection contains ten piano congregational arrangements. Each arrangement has an introduction and at least two verses/choruses of accompaniment…some hymns contain three verses worth of accompaniment.

The arrangements do contain chord substitutions for extra zest so the piano accompaniment will not be suitable for four-part hymnal style singing.  (Just trying to target the small churches that generally sing unison).

Suggested uses of this collection other than congregational singing:  vocal solo specials, unison choir specials, violin solo specials. (lyrics in the score are included with each arrangement)

The playing level of the collection is late intermediate to early advanced. Can’t wait to get it online!

 

Revive Us Again (FREE) piano arrangement

Thursday, October 30th, 2014

Revive-Us-Again-comments-in-red

Downloadable Link Below

I was going to share a free sampling of left hand improvising ideas for Revive Us Again but I wound up writing a full verse and chorus of this challenging hymn.  It’s not a hard hymn to play but difficult to dress up for congregational singing.

The first line of the hymn is basically the same chord!  Most church pianists realize that they have to adhere to the chord structure in the hymnal when playing for congregational singing IF their congregation sings parts…to prevent chord clashes.  I can’t help but add chord substitutions on this hymn!  Our congregation doesn’t sing parts so I can have fun!  🙂

I’m sharing several improvising ideas for Revive Us Again (congregational style).  I tried to liven up the 1st line of music by creating broken chord tones and alternating bass notes within the same chord. A broken chord tone pattern already exists in the hymnal version but offered a little different one and added a little more variety than the hymnal version.

Revive-Us-Again-congregational-or-prelude

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Simply-Christmas-Cover

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